Activity 1C: Reflect

Photo: Kt Miller / Polar Bears International

Polar Bear Distribution

Step One: Read the Following

Where do polar bears live?

Polar bears are found in five different countries.  These are known as the polar bear nations or range states

  • United States

  • Canada

  • Greenland

  • Russia

  • Norway

For research and management purposes, scientists have currently identified 19 subpopulations of polar bears living in the Arctic. These subpopulations are distributed through the five polar bear range states as seen on the map below – you will see the approximate population size for each one. 

In Activity Three, you will learn more about the status of polar bears in each region as well as the four different ice regions they inhabit.

Step Two: Explore the PBI Bear Tracker

To learn more about the Western Hudson Bay and Southern Hudson Bay polar bear subpopulations – visit the PBI Bear Tracker and track bears over the course of one year. You'll see the movement of the bears in relation to the sea ice formation. We even have a group of European Arctic Ambassador Centers tracking a bear this year. 

If you'd like to learn more about how scientists track polar bears please view the Tundra Connections Program webcast below, recorded live on the tundra outside Churchill. You can also read this blog piece about the new satellite ear tags that have been deployed recently in Churchill.

Step Three: Share

Share in the Discord community one of the following...

  • Have you identified the Arctic Ambassador bear?

  • What do you notice about the bear movements? In relation to time of year? In relation to ice coverage?

  • What are some ways you have/can use this tool in your organization?

  • Answers to one of the guiding questions listed in Activity 1B.


Continue on to Activity 1D – Apply.